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In France, instead of relying on your smartphone for entertainment on the train, you can instead read a short story from a vending-machine.
Audrey Bourget

15 Dec 2016 - 10:10 AM  UPDATED 15 Dec 2016 - 2:02 PM

The idea originated from French publishing start-up Short Edition: they've installed vending-machines dispensing short stories in France's train stations to promote reading and help new writers make a name for themselves.

Once you find a vending-machine, you can select the duration of the story you want to read (1, 3 or 5 minutes). You then press on a button and the story will be printed. Easy and free!

There is poetry, fiction, children's stories, etc.

"Short literature has a place everywhere. We thought it would be funny to dispense stories, the same way other vending-machines dispense food or drinks. We like to use paper, it's very unexpected when you're used to a smartphone", Short Edition director Christophe Sibieude explained to Telerama.

Over 70 short stories vending-machines have been installed, mostly in France. The first ones were in Grenoble, but they since multiplied all over the country, including Paris. One of them is in the United States, at Cafe Zoetrope, the filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola's cafe, who is a huge fan.

100, 000 stories have been distributed so far.

For those concerned about the environment, the vending-machines use thermal impression, which doesn't require cartridges, and that the paper, without Bisphenol A (BPA), is recyclable.

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